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American Shipper

Hutchison refutes Ecuador claims

Hutchison refutes Ecuador claims

Hutchison Port Holdings on Monday refuted comments from Ecuador President Rafael Correa over the weekend that the Hong Kong-based terminal operator wasn’t meeting development goals at a container terminal in the Port of Manta.

   International press agencies quoted Correa as saying he would kick Hutchison out of the country for lagging behind on a $430 million, 30-year concession agreement signed in 2006.

   Hutchison, however, said it is in compliance with the concession agreement, according to a Dow Jones report Monday. The terminal is the first in Ecuador for Hutchison, which has a portfolio of terminals it operates in the region, including Argentina, Mexico, Panama and the Bahamas.

   “We are in compliance with the concession agreement, and have been working closely with the local authorities to develop modern container-handling facilities at the Port of Manta,” said Hutchison spokesman Anthony Tam. “We have not heard anything about changes to our concession contract.”

   The terminal is 15 hectares but will be expanded to 75 hectares with a quay length of 1.5 kilometers.

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